Monday, August 24, 2015

August So Far

Today is the first day of school for Dixon. Shortest summer ever (literally - it was barely two months, from start to finish). 

We did make the most of that time, though. I have some writing to do about June and July...but I haven't organized those photos yet (I day). So, instead, here's August - so far:

Top from left: BBQ at Willie's; beef tallow at Sugarvale, post-concert McDonald's, Kit + Erin at Willie's
Middle: Pretty carrots; me with friends Zim and Gene at George's bday; pre-ZBB Bill; Left Foot Braking band
Bottom: Cherry Slammer by Alicia; Curious Traveler shandies; Snacks at Bluejacket; end of summer dinner at our house

Week One: We kicked off August with a 40th birthday party for Bill L., at his house in Annapolis. My friend Rob's band, Left Foot Braking, plays, and a good time is had by all. Later in that week, our friends Sam and Stacey, and their kids, come to visit and I fail to take any photos at all. But we did have a fun lunch at CVP and a lot of very, very big laughs about the old days, when Sam and Cooper were post-college roommates.

Week Two: This was a big one. Tuesday night, we celebrated George's 40th with a surprise party at Greene Turtle in Towson, which was a very good time. Thursday, we had drinks with local friends and Friday, Cooper and Bill and I took a half day to head to DC for the Zac Brown Band/Avett Brothers concert at Nationals Stadium. We met my sister and Clark for the show and also got to hang out with a bunch of other friends, including Alicia's cousin Kelly. 

We had pre-concert snacks at at Bluejacket, including fried chickpeas, soft pretzels and a charcuterie plate, then we walked over to Willie's Brew and Que, where we were pleasantly surprised, especially with the pulled pork and pimiento cheese - we'd headed there mostly for the beer, to be honest. While there, we also got lucky: I won a raffle, including tickets to the show and a hat for Bill. Since we already had tickets, I gave the prize to a nice girl repping Sam Adams - in exchange, she hooked us up with a bunch of Curious Traveler shandies. Funnily enough, the company actually sent me a couple of the shandies earlier in the summer - and I loved them. So that all worked out!

Post-concert, we discovered that the area around the stadium is severely lacking in late-night food. So...Bill bought all of the food at McDonald's. And it was good. There's nothing quite like a 1 a.m. cheeseburger to make you feel good about yourself in the morning.

The next morning, we returned to Baltimore and wrapped the whole experience with a killer breakfast at Miss Shirley's in Roland Park. Just good stuff all around.

Week Three: Things calmed down a tiny bit last week, but we still managed to end the summer with a bang. Friday night, we had a fin d'ete dinner at our house, starting end ending with cherries, courtesy of Alicia. She made gorgeous cherry, vodka and lime cocktails to start and, for dessert, a cakey cherry cobbler. In between, we ate roasted carrots and fennel, a tomato, plum and mozzarella salad, crab cakes and, thanks to my general skittishness with poultry, slightly undercooked chicken (yum).

Saturday, Cooper and I went to another 40th party and, while we had a sitter, also squeezed in a couple great drinks and snacks at Grand Cru and Sugarvale in Mount Vernon, where we ate the beef tallow candle (sounds gross, tastes good, looks awesome).

And what I haven't mentioned is that on the in between nights, we went to about 8 restaurants - my reviewing schedule has been intense lately - and also put in some dinner-at-the-pool time. 

This month has been so much fun. I'm exhausted, even after just writing this, but it's been a blast. And now, with Dixon back at school all day, I'm ready to buckle down. To prepare for...more fun things. 

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